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OFFICE OF THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY FOR THE AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY BUDGET PROTOCOLS FOR THE OFFICE OF THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY

Preamble - Web viewThe parties recognise that each branch has distinct roles and responsibilities that will not be encroached by one ... accounting and other technical ... advanced

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( Budget Protocols for the Office of the Legislative Assembly)

(LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLYFOR THE AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY) (Office of the Legislative Assembly)

name of committee

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Preamble

This document establishes: the principles to which the parties commit; the responsibilities of the participants in the budgetary process; and the protocols to be observed in developing and considering budget appropriations for the Office of the Legislative Assembly (the Office).

It gives further effect to the separation of powers doctrine while at the same time acknowledging and supporting the financial initiative of the Executive (the right of the Executive to develop and frame appropriations for consideration by the Legislature).

Parties

The following parties endorse and commit to this agreement:

The ACT LegislatureRepresented by Vicki Dunne MLA, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly for the Australian Capital Territory

The ACT ExecutiveRepresented by Katy Gallagher MLA, Chief Minister for the ACT

Term of effect

The protocols, in the form of an agreement, will have effect upon signing by each party and will be tabled in the Assembly by the Speaker.

The agreement will remain in effect in the form tabled unless otherwise discontinued or amended by mutual agreement of the parties.

The agreement may be discontinued by written agreement of the parties. Where the agreement is discontinued, the Assembly will be notified on the first sitting day following its discontinuation.

The agreement may be amended with the written agreement of the parties. Where the agreement is amended, a copy of the agreement, as amended, will be tabled in the Assembly on the first sitting day following the amended agreement having been agreed and signed by the parties.

The parties agree that a review will be conducted in 2016 to assess whether the agreement is working effectively, with details of the reviewer, the scope and the timing to be agreed between the parties at the beginning of the 2016 calendar year.

Scope of effect

Nothing in the agreement purports to take precedence over, or to limit any rights or obligations arising from: the standing orders; legislation; or resolutions of the Assembly.

Where a conflict with the agreement arises, it will be resolved in favour of the relevant standing order, legislation, or resolution of the Assembly.

The agreement should be read in conjunction with the following:

Legislative Assembly (Office of the Legislative Assembly) Act 2012

Financial Management Act 1996

Public Sector Management Act 1994

Standing Orders and Continuing Resolutions of the Assembly

Statement of principles

The parties commit to advance the separation of powers doctrine as it relates to the mutually independent status of the legislative and executive branches of government in the ACTs form of parliamentary democracy. The parties recognise that each branch has distinct roles and responsibilities that will not be encroached by one another.

The parties agree that the doctrine will be given due recognition at all stages of the development and consideration of the annual budget and appropriation bill for the Office of the Legislative Assembly and any additional appropriation.

The parties acknowledge and support the principle of the financial initiative of the Executive the exclusive right of executive arm of government to develop and frame appropriation bills for consideration by the legislative arm of government.

The parties acknowledge that, while the executive government is entitled to frame a budget appropriation bill as it sees fit, the recommended appropriation for the Office of the Legislative Assembly will, as a matter of fundamental principle, be regarded as a statement of the Legislatures resource requirements and priorities.

The parties acknowledge that there will be occasions in which the demands of government policy have the potential to conflict with the roles and functions of an effective legislature. Where these conflicts potential or otherwise arise, the parties agree to ensure that the Legislature can perform its accountability, representative and legislative roles effectively.

The parties recognise and support the independent status of the Legislative Assembly and the Office of the Legislative Assembly in its capacity as the Legislature's primary source of administrative and procedural advice and support.

The parties acknowledge that the Office of the Assembly is not subject to the direction of the Executive and is not, therefore, bound by policies, procedures and other governance arrangements promulgated by the Executive or its officers in the ACT public service, unless otherwise provided for by law.

Budget responsibilitiesThe Speaker

Pursuant to s20 of the Financial Management Act 1996, the parties acknowledge that the Speaker is responsible for:

consulting with the Standing Committee on Administration and Procedure on the recommended appropriation (s20(a)) for the Office;

approving the recommended appropriation and draft budget (s20(b)) for the Office of the Legislative Assembly; and

transmitting the recommended appropriation and the draft budget to the Treasurer according to the timetable agreed with Treasury as part of the budget process.

Where the Speaker seeks to advance an Assembly Budget Proposal on behalf of the Office, the parties agree that the Speaker shall be given the opportunity to make an oral submission to the Budget Cabinet Committee on the recommended appropriation.

The Clerk

The parties agree that the Clerk, supported by the Office, is responsible for:

providing advice to the Speaker and the Standing Committee on Administration and Procedure on the funding requirements of the Office;

preparing information and analysis for the Speaker to assist in quantifying the recommended appropriation and draft budget for the Office;

preparing any Assembly Budget Proposals forming part of the recommended appropriation and draft budget for the consideration of the Speaker;

providing sufficient and timely information to the Executive to allow technical and other adjustments to the Offices annual budget to be made and to allow year to year comparisons to be made in relation to the Offices financial statements; and

appearing before the Budget Cabinet Committee to assist in the Speakers oral submission on the recommended appropriation.

The Standing Committee on Administration and Procedure

Pursuant to s20 of the Financial Management Act 1996, the parties acknowledge that the Standing Committee on Administration and Procedure will be consulted in relation to the recommended appropriation that is to be transmitted to the Treasurer by the Speaker.

The parties acknowledge that the Standing Committee on Administration has a consultative, although not determinative, role in the development of the recommended appropriation transmitted by the Speaker to the Treasurer.

The Treasurer

The parties agree that the Treasurer is responsible for receiving the recommended appropriation from the Speaker and transmitting the recommended appropriation to all members of the Cabinet for the consideration of the Budget Cabinet Committee.

The Treasurer is also required to present a statement of reasons to the Assembly where the appropriation for the Office of the Legislative Assembly is less than the recommended appropriation sought by the Speaker.

Budget Cabinet Committee

The parties agree that the Budget Cabinet Committee is responsible for deciding the amount of funding to be included in the appropriation bill for the Office, including whether or not Assembly Budget Proposals will be funded via appropriation.

Budget process overview

Budget protocols

The parties commit to and will abide by the following protocols in relation to the development and consideration of the budget for the Office of the Legislative Assembly.

Recommended appropriation

Prior to the end of a given financial year (typically prior to the end of the second quarter), the Speaker will transmit the recommended appropriation to the Treasurer for the subsequent financial year.

In any given year, the recommended appropriation, in relation to both the Territorial and Controlled entities administered by the Office, is taken to mean:

a) Base funding

+

b) Technical adjustments

+

c) Funding for any Assembly Budget Proposals

Given precise quanta are not available at the time that the recommended appropriation is provided to the Treasurer, the recommended appropriation will not generally contain a specific amount in relation to: a) Base funding + b) Technical adjustments.

Base funding

The Offices base funding refers to the funding appropriated to the Office in the current financial year in which a recommended appropriation is transmitted for the subsequent year and includes:

Government Payment for Outputs (Controlled Entity)

Payments on Behalf of the Territory (Territorial Entity)

Capital Upgrades Funding (Territorial)

Capital Injection Funding (Controlled)[footnoteRef:1] [1: Where the name of these revenue sources changes in the future ACT Treasury nomenclature, equivalence should be drawn between these terms (as they were applied in the 2012-13 budget papers) and any new terms.]

Technical adjustments to the budget

Technical adjustments refer to accounting and other technical adjustments such as consumer price indexation or adjustments arising from changes to applicable Aus